Land Property in Britain

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Joined: 22-02-18
May 2 2021 15:33
Land Property in Britain

A long time ago when I was in England I bought (or was given) a book with the approximate title "Who does England [or Britain] belong to?", or something like that. I think the publisher was Pluto Press but I'm not sure, the book doesn't seem to be listed (or not anymore) in their catalogue anyway.
The book was about land ownership and I was surprised to learn that the aristocracy, the crown, the Church of England and a few colleges in Cambridge and Oxford owned almost all of the land but also a significant portion of the real estate.
Later, shortly after the end of the miners' strike, I went to Shirebrook to visit comrades. At one point I needed to go to Doncaster and one of the miners accompanied me. During the whole journey he spent his time explaining that to the right for x kilometres the land belonged to such and such an aristocrat and to the left for y kilometres it belonged to such and such another aristocrat, etc., until we arrived at Doncaster.
This kind of situation is quite strange to a Frenchman because the huge estates of the Crown, aristocracy and the Church were dismantled at the time of the revolution in 1789..
As I understand it, it is difficult to buy a house with the system of ampheotic leases, a system that keeps the estate indefinitely in the same entity.

My question is this: I would like to know about the structure of land and property ownership in the UK.
If someone could give me some information or point me in the right direction, it would be very helpful.


R Totale's picture
R Totale
Joined: 15-02-18
May 2 2021 20:18

I was going to say you want the Land Justice Network - apparently they're now out of action, but the website might still be useful:

See also:

There's a whole ACG pamphlet on land you can order through here:

Joined: 20-04-08
May 3 2021 09:06

Stats for Scotland

Andy Wightman is the one to go to for the situation in Scotland

Recent changes has been the Duke of Buccleuch selling off some of his land to Land Trusts.

Fozzie's picture
Joined: 4-12-03
May 3 2021 10:50

Also of interest: The rich at play: foxhunting, land ownership and the Countryside Alliance

Joined: 22-02-18
May 3 2021 14:31

Thanks a lot, this will be helpful